Would You Attend a Funeral While Pregnant???

Updated on October 14, 2011
A.C. asks from Boston, MA
58 answers

I have a question for you mama's out there, This year I have had two big losses in my family, we lost my father in-law and my great-grandmother while I was in my first trimester. I attended both funerals but was a little uneasy about being in an atmosphere full grief and depression. Now that im in my third trimester a friend/co-worker (also an ex-boyfriend) suddenly passed and I'm wondering if I should attend his services. My husband thinks I should not and I'm also uneasy about it, but at the same time I want to show my respects to him and his family. What do you think?

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So What Happened?

Well, i'm not using my pregnancy as an excuse not to go as many of you said. On the contrary I want to go to pay my respects. But I am a mother who is very aware of how thoughts, feelings, and atmosphere can affect your growing child and just wanted to get a feel for how other moms felt. My husband is supportive of my choice, he was an ex over 6 years ago and all ended well so that is not a factor. Death never comes at a convienent time, I understand that. Thanks for all your responses, I just wish someone could have related to my reservations.

Featured Answers

B.S.

answers from Lansing on

Yup, was at the showing of my uncle when I started getting contractions. I had her that night/early AM. So I missed the actual funeral. No doubt about it, I would have been at his funeral if I could have made it. :( (Oh and guess I should add...I was 8 days over my due date...it wasn't stress related that I went into labor)

But then, I don't think there is anything wrong with going to funerals pregnant.

5 moms found this helpful

A.S.

answers from Detroit on

If you want to pay respects, then why not?

And I found out I was pregnant [w/my now 8yr old] just after my grandfather's funeral and announced it at the wake. It made people feel better in that situation... At least in my family it did.

I was pregnant [same child] at my grandma's funeral.

I'm a bit confused as to why this would be an issue.

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J.C.

answers from San Francisco on

In my opinion, being pregnant would have nothing to do with paying my respects at a funeral...unless, my doctor had put me on bed rest.

5 moms found this helpful

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S.R.

answers from Kansas City on

What does being pregnant have to do with going?

9 moms found this helpful

✤.J.

answers from Dover on

I guess I don't understand why you're considering not going...? What does being pregnant have to do with the need to pay your last respects and be with family & friends while grieving?

8 moms found this helpful

M.F.

answers from Portland on

I don't understand the question?
What does one have to do with the other?

7 moms found this helpful
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✩.!.

answers from Los Angeles on

What does being pregnant have to do with paying your respects for a dear friend?

I would go

7 moms found this helpful
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J.B.

answers from Boston on

Huh? Unless you're concerned about going into labor and have to travel to the funeral, why wouldn't you go? Am I missing something here? The only time I worried about a funeral was when a relative was dying and the funeral was 3 hours away and I was in the final weeks of a twin pregnancy. I ended up delivering before she passed so the problem was moot but other than the risk of labor far from the hospital, I don't get why this would be an issue?

6 moms found this helpful

A.S.

answers from Iowa City on

I would go. My pregnancy wouldn't have any bearing on that decision unless I was on bed rest.

6 moms found this helpful

T.K.

answers from Dallas on

I'm sorry for the loss of your father in law and great grandmother. I'm sorry they wont get a chance to meet the baby. You've got a lot on your plate right now.
I went to, planned and paid for my mothers funeral 8 and a half months pregnant. The baby wasn't affected by my grief. She's the happiest most joyful loving little girl. My health wasn't affected. I carried her to term and had an easy delivery. The only downside to the whole thing was my feet and back hurt the whole day.

Now, if it's because he's an ex and your husband doesn't want you to go, that's a whole differant can of worms!

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C.S.

answers from Miami on

Would you go if you were not pregnant? If so, then go. I wonder if your husband is more concerned about the "ex-boyfriend" status rather than the funeral. Ask him. I would certainly attend the funeral of a co-worker.

There is nothing medically wrong with you - you are not contagious. Gestating is a normal life process and going to a funeral will certainly not hurt you or your baby.

5 moms found this helpful

A.G.

answers from Houston on

I attended my MIL and FIL funerals pregnant (2 days apart and 9 months along). People were worried about my grief because i was pregnant and paying less attention to my husband. I thought it was quite silly. Sure its stressful but i think the emphasis on the dangers of that to pregnant women are a bit over exaggerated.

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A.F.

answers from Houston on

Update: You said in your "what happened" that you wish someone could have related to your reservations." You never clearly stated what your reservations were regarding the pregnancy. You did say you were "a little uneasy about being in an atmosphere full of grief and depression" but never said that you were uneasy about the atmosphere's effect on your baby. Many, many of the first responses included questions as to how your pregnancy affected your decision. It helps to know what you're thinking if you want someone else to relate.

I'm not clear on what being pregnant has to do with your decision.

If your husband isn't thrilled with the idea AND you're uneasy with it, then I wouldn't go.

Perhaps you could go to the wake - that's where the family really gets a chance to meet those who want to pay their respects - at the funeral they rarely know who's there and who isn't.

4 moms found this helpful
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M.S.

answers from Kansas City on

Absolutely go, pregnancy shouldn't enter into the equasion, unless there are some physical complications. Even if he was an ex-boyfriend, you were co-workers, there needs to be a sense of closure for yourself that would be more "healthy" for yourself that you did the "right" thing as long as there is a good relationship with his family. Perhaps your husband would attend with you for support as well. Maybe attending a "visitation or wake" prior to the funeral would be appropriate as well. You could maybe attend as a group from work.
Life is too short to harbor grudges. I have attended funerals and or visitations to exes before and the family has always been appreciative that I thought so highly of them and/or their loved one. Some really didn't know me well, but I went for my own "closure". Has never been a problem for anyone.

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C.N.

answers from Baton Rouge on

There is no reason to avoid a funeral because you're pregnant.

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S.E.

answers from Philadelphia on

The ex-boyfriend factor is the only factor that would matter really. Would there be anyone in his life that might be unhappy to see you happily preggers at his funeral? Other than that I would go. A pregnant person is proof that life goes on and can be a hope-filled reminder to those grieving.

4 moms found this helpful

F.H.

answers from Phoenix on

I don't get the question. I was 8 months pregnant when my uncle died and I went to the funeral. I don't think anyone *likes* to go to a funeral but I don't get what being pregnant has to do with that. Good luck.

4 moms found this helpful

A.M.

answers from Kansas City on

I attended my grandmothers funderl at 7 months pregnant, and a wedding in the same weekend! If you feel that you should pay respects then yes you should go. If it is because he's an ex then no...

I would go to an ex's funeral to show my respects, pregnant or not!

4 moms found this helpful

J.W.

answers from St. Louis on

I don't get the "atmosphere full of grief and depression". You have full control over the atmosphere that surrounds you regardless of the situation.

My grandmother died when I was 8 months pregnant with my older daughter. Because it was so sudden it was the only funeral that has ever made me cry. I am that person that remembers the good times at funerals and this one I felt like I didn't get the chance to make enough happy memories. Not sure if that makes sense.

Neither me or my daughter had any ill effects from going to that funeral. I believe I would have had ill effects if I had not attended.

Still this doesn't sound like anyone close to you and you know your tolerance a lot better than any of us will.

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K.P.

answers from New York on

Yes of ocurse you should go. You're not depressed yourself, so being around people in mourning will have no bearing on your health.

I attended a funeral for a dear friend's child who died while I was pregnant and also attended my best friend's mother's funeral at nearly 9 months out-of-state. I felt good and her father is an OBGYN (as are all of his friends). They teased me that there were worse places to go into labor than a room full of OBGYN's.

Go. You don't have to go to the cemetary or to the lunch/reception after. At minimum, you should attend (with your husband) the calling hours.

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L.T.

answers from Chicago on

If the person that you want to support is important to you then you should go. Pregancy does not make a difference and it seems that you are using it as an excuse. Would this person do the same of you??

If you are on bed rest and/or your doctor is suggesting there is a problem with your health then a card to your friend would be fine. Never put yourself at risk!

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J.B.

answers from Atlanta on

I'm sorry - is this some cultural thing for you? I've never heard of not going to a funeral while pregnant. Why would it matter? If the loss was a big one to you, you're going to feel sorrow anyway. In the case of your ex and friend -sure you should go if you still considered him a friend. There have been some studies showing ill effects on babies if the mother is depressed long-term during pregnancy, but going to funerals should have no bearing on your baby or pregnancy at all.

3 moms found this helpful

L.B.

answers from Biloxi on

The atmosphere of anywhere will not effect your unborn child. That is a old wives tail.

Um, maybe your hubby just doesn't want you to attend the services of an ex-boyfriend?

3 moms found this helpful

G.T.

answers from Redding on

Are you feeling uneasy because you used to date the guy? If you were still friends and his family likes you I don't see any reason not to go if you feel like you want to.
If your ex's family has a problem with you it might look odd for the deceased's pregnant ex to show up. Just sayin.
If I were you I would consider just sending some nice flowers with a kind note to his family.
I don't see how it could harm your pregnancy any, if that's what youre worried about.... unless funerals stress you out really bad.
Would you feel better taking some food to his parents/wife AFTER the service and paying your respects that way? That could be your other option.

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A.V.

answers from Washington DC on

Is it about being pregnant or that you don't like funerals? Or does DH not like that it's an ex's funeral? I would not let pregnancy stop me from showing respect to the departed. You don't have to stay long and if you feel tired, then quietly slip out and leave and don't stay for any reception or graveside service.

3 moms found this helpful

J.F.

answers from Grand Rapids on

I was nine months pregnant at my father's funeral. Didn't put me into labor. It was sad, and the whole experience of losing him was stressful and horrible and sad. After all that, if I didn't go into labor, I don't know why the funeral would have caused it. Made it through just fine. You won't be standing there for several hours, just sitting in a chair for an hour or so. If you feel like you want to go, go. If you are uncomfortable with going because of your past relationship and are looking for a reason not to attend, then go with your gut and do what another poster suggested and just send flowers and a nice card. Take it from someone who has lost 2 parents in the last 3 years, it's nice to have someone remember your loved one and let you know they are thinking of you. It doesn't matter if it is in person or in the form of a card or a note. At the funeral, no one is paying attention to who did or didn't come, they are trying to get through the day. A card or note received a few days later will be a perfectly acceptable way to express how you feel and they will remember it more. On the other hand, if you are really wanting to go, go. It won't hurt you or your bably.

2 moms found this helpful

J.S.

answers from Hartford on

Why wouldn't you attend while pregnant? I don't understand. Of course you should go if this person who passed away was truly a friend. As a pregnant woman you're not so delicate that you can't be around people who are grieving. It's not "bad" for you and the baby.

If you don't want to go for other reasons, then own up to that. Don't use your pregnancy as the reason because that's just... I'm sorry, I have to be blunt. It's ridiculous to use your pregnancy as an excuse not to attend a funeral if it's nearby and not hours away. If you had to travel several hours and you were near your due date, that would be different.

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C.J.

answers from Milwaukee on

There's no perfect time to die or have a baby. Life is funny like that.

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D.K.

answers from Pittsburgh on

Of course I would. I am unsure what being pregnant has to do with attending a funeral?

2 moms found this helpful

⊱.H.

answers from Spokane on

I went to my boss' son's funeral when I was pregnant with my oldest ~ it was a very emotional service as his son was only 9 months old when he passed.
I also went to my Grandmother's funeral when I was 34 weeks pregnant with my youngest.
You and your baby will be fine. If you want to go, then go.

2 moms found this helpful

E.B.

answers from Seattle on

I have.

To my hubbies Grandma's Funeral.

I was extremely Pregnant..

I guess I have to pose the question..Why do you feel uneasy?.....I think that it is perfectly ok to go.

People will get that you are not bringing your big belly to gloat.

Go:)

2 moms found this helpful

L.L.

answers from Rochester on

Pregnancy has nothing to do with it. Personally, I would not want to attend an exboyfriends funeral, for obvious reasons, but I would still pay my respect by sending flowers, a card, a sentiment, whatever. That's just me...I don't like funerals anyhow.

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A.T.

answers from Hartford on

Yes. i have atteneded several. It never crossed my mind not to.

2 moms found this helpful

L.U.

answers from Seattle on

Why wouldn't you go? Are you afraid the grief will make you sad? It's okay to be sad. My favorite aunt died when I was about 35 weeks pregnant and I sobbed for days. I couldn't travel (she lived 3 states away) to go to her funeral, but if she had been closer I absolutely would have gone. Maybe your husband doesn't want you to go because it's an ex?
L.

2 moms found this helpful

J.P.

answers from Lakeland on

I can understand where the grief would affect the pregnancy. My older sister was under 3 months pregnant when our older brother passed away and she miscarried. I don't think that would affect you being so far along and not as close in relation. If it were me I would send flowers and/or a donation in the person’s name.

Sorry for loss.

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C.B.

answers from Boston on

YES - also bring little children if you have any. It gives the grieving family the reassurance that life goes on, and what is happier than a toddler being silly and a happily expectant mom. I was pregnant at my husband's grandma's funeral and 2 months later our daughter was born and her grandma was so happy to see her own mother's eyes on my child.

1 mom found this helpful

K.G.

answers from Boca Raton on

Yes, I would definitely still go~

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D..

answers from San Francisco on

I'm sorry for your loss. I can't answer what's best for you, but I would go. While there is definitely an atmosphere of grief, funerals are often also a celebration of a person's life. For me, hearing and/or sharing fond memories helps bring closure and aids in healing. But that is a personal response - only you can answer what's best for you and your baby. If you think attending the funeral will bring only stress and grief, maybe it's not a good idea to go. You might also want to consider how you would feel if you didn't go, as guilt and regret can also be stressful.

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S.Q.

answers from Los Angeles on

I went to my grandfather's funeral when I was very pregnant with my first son. My grandfather had many grandchildren, but on his deathbed he asked about only me, three times. I was in another part of the country at the time, but had visited him. When my son was born, he was given my grandfather's name. Nothing bad happened, and I was there to support my father who was very sad at the loss of his dad.

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K.M.

answers from Denver on

My MIL passed away when i was about 7 months pregnant. It was an extremely difficult time. I never thought twice about going to her funeral. I too was worried about how it would effect my un-born baby, but I was going to be feeling all that grief anyway. My daughter who is now 14 months pregnant is truly one of the happiest babies I know, so I dont think she was effected too much.

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M.T.

answers from New York on

There's no reason to avoid a funeral because you are pregnant, unless you are Jewish and therefore not supposed to. You will not be any less sad if you skip the services, and your baby will not pick up on the feelings of other people.

1 mom found this helpful

R.B.

answers from La Crosse on

I guess the question is how close are you to term and how close were you to this person?

The reason I ask is because I went to one when I was 7 1/2 months. It was sad/ hard but didn't cause stress.

Then a week before my son was due my uncle died in a motorcycle accident. My Dr induced me so I could go to the funeral. He said the stress of the funeral he was afraid would put me into labor. Being my son was breech ( flipped the day before so my c- section was turned into being induced) and being 4 hours away he didn't want me to go into labor then.

I think it comes down to how close you are to your due date and how much stress it will put on you and the baby attending. Good luck with your choice and sorry for your loss.

1 mom found this helpful

M.D.

answers from Washington DC on

I am so sorry for your losses. I am not sure if it is a religious, cultural, or just personal thing, but if you are uncomfortable, don't go. I don't think going will harm your baby though.

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H.P.

answers from Houston on

Do what you need to do to strengthen your heart and soul. I always have to guard against this sort of thing because I am a sensitive. When I was pregnant I took extra special care so as not to affect my baby. Even now I am careful because I am still nursing him. You have to determine if you feel strong enough to go...and if you could live comfortably with yourself after not going. Wake up and decide on the morning of.

Why does your husband not want you to go? Is it because this is your ex? Just curious.

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L.S.

answers from Spokane on

In my cuture there are "precautions" a pregnant woman must take at a funeral - such as when to leave (before the casket) and a special little prayer she must say before entering. So I get it.

If you're very uncomfortable going, be sure to send a heartfelt card to the family expressing your condolences and regret that you could not attend the services (you don't have to specifically say *why*) along with some flowers.

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T.C.

answers from Colorado Springs on

If the question is only about the fact that you are pregnant, then I would go. If your husband doesn't want you to go for other reasons, then I would honor his wishes. Life goes on. Being pregnant has nothing to do with the death of someone else. If anything, it is a glimmer of hope. Maybe I'm missing your point about it. Do you think the funeral will somehow effect the baby? I was 8 months pregnant with my second when a close friend died. It was very difficult. Of course we went to the services, etc. My doctor did do u/s and non-stress tests on me though to make sure my grief wasn't too hard on the baby, but that was before any of the services.

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K.A.

answers from Pittsburgh on

If you want to pay your respects I would attend. I have attended funerals at all stages of gestation and I think you should be fine. You are "out of the woods" so to speak in the risk factor area.

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J.K.

answers from Phoenix on

I'm sorry for your losses. I went to my friend's funeral in my last trimester. My sister also went to my other sister's funeral days before she delivered. They were close to us so we wouldn't have missed it. If I weren't as close, I'd listen to hubby. Good luck!

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C.M.

answers from Cincinnati on

Why would a pregnancy prevent you from attending a funeral??? If you have to travel a long distance, that is one thing, but if it is local, what is the issue?

I was eight months pregnant when an old friend from high school/college passed away after a long fight with breast cancer. There was at at least one other pregnant mourner at the services. At least that is what I remember, but there could have been others.

R.M.

answers from Boston on

for me if i was prgo and this came up im unsure if i would be able to go. unless it was a family member. some times still for me dealth brings back memorys and it gets to me maybe harder then it would someone else. if u feel as you can go send a card flowers i have seen people do that. if your heard and heart say not to go then do what you feel is right!!

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D.B.

answers from Charlotte on

.

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L.O.

answers from Philadelphia on

If you are uneasy about it, why would you go against your instincts?
You are going to be a mom and want to do what is best for your child. If you feel the safest choice for your child is not to go, then that is your answer. His family will understand.

I do not know what religion they are but you could send a mass card. You could also send flowers, or stop by their place the day after the funeral to give them your condolences privately.

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P.K.

answers from New York on

I would definitely go. Your baby will be just fine.

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S.L.

answers from Savannah on

if grief and depression affect children in the womb then by all means put yourself in a bubble. so you don't also affect the child with stress or sadness of any type. because life never gives you negative emotions right? let's just hope that you can continue that bubble when the child is born and he/she never has to be sad or negative.

reality is that the baby will be fine and you might be overreacting.

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R.R.

answers from Boston on

Hi there,

I'm sorry that I was not able to respond sooner as I do understand your reservations and I'm sorry that others were not more supportive of your concerns.

I believe atmosphere affects your child, too, but I guess, as in all cases, you have to follow your gut here. Is there any other way to show your support to the family? Maybe just attend the service and leave as soon as possible or go to their home if there is something being held there to give your condolences or if either of these still make you uncomfortable, send a really nice card and some flowers. I'm sure they'd understand and just the thought at a time like this means a lot.

I'm sorry I can't be of more help, just wanted you to know there was someone out there who understood where you are coming from.

Take care and trust that whatever decision you make is for the best.

R.A.

answers from Boston on

I think if I were in your shoes, and an ex of mine had passed away, I would be a little uneasy about going to his funeral and being so pregnant. Having all of his family look at me. I would probably feel a bit awkward/weird ( regardless of how things ended and that everyone got along and were friends). On the other hand, they may not even notice at all in their grief, and would be very appreciative for you to attend. It's a hard call.

As far as the atmosphere affecting your unborn child, it isn't the atmosphere that will effect your child, it is you. If you are uncomfortable, and are uneasy about going, don't put so much pressure on yourself.

I see nothing wrong with sending flowers, a donation, card to his family. Maybe make a dish or casserole for them, and when you bring it over, visit with the family then. It will be more personal, and their won't be so many people around.

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B.M.

answers from Boston on

My father died when I was eight months along. It was very stressful but I never hesitated going because of my pregnancy. I don't see why you shouldn't go unless it for a different reason. Maybe your husband thinks you shouldn't go because it is an ex boyfriend??

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M.C.

answers from Boston on

my great aunt died when i was pregnant and i went to support her daughter. i would do it again. being pregnant would not stop me.

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